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McDonald’s like-for-like sales rose by the highest margin in over a decade

Sales at McDonald’s have achieved their highest growth in over a decade last year as the US fast food giant continued to invest in technology and delivery.

Like-for-like sales jumped 5.9% both for 2019 as a whole and for the final quarter of the year, which saw the ousting of former CEO Steve Easterbrook for having a relationship with a colleague.

New CEO Chris Kempczinski said 2019 marked a “year of significant milestones” for the business, including surpassing $100bn in systemwide sales and achieving its “highest global comparable sales growth in over a decade”.

Consolidated revenues came in broadly flat year on year at $21.1bn but operating income rose 3% to $9.1bn.

Growth was recorded across all of the company’s geographies, with the international operated segment up 6.1%, the US up 5% and the international developmental licensed segment up 7.2%.

“As we look to 2020, we will continue to deliver delicious food and optimize our investments as we further transform the experience for our customers through added convenience and digital engagement,” said Kempczinski.

Signs of this investment in expanding the business’ digital engagement have already been seen across the UK, as on Tuesday (28 January) Just Eat announced it had struck a deal with McDonald’s for McDelivery to be added to the takeaway company’s platform.

In the UK, McDonald’s already delivers through Uber Eats but will join Just Eat during 2020.

McDonald’s shares were trading 1.8% higher at $214.27 each following the announcement.